Use of the Internet as a subnetwork for experimentation with the OSI network layer
RFC 1070

Document Type RFC - Unknown (February 1989; No errata)
Last updated 2013-03-02
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Network Working Group                                          R. Hagens
Request for Comments:  1070                    U of Wiscsonsin - Madison
                                                                 N. Hall
                                               U of Wiscsonsin - Madison
                                                                 M. Rose
                                                    The Wollongong Group
                                                           February 1989

                Use of the Internet as a Subnetwork for
              Experimentation with the OSI Network Layer

Status of this Memo

   This RFC proposes a scenario for experimentation with the
   International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Open Systems
   Interconnection (OSI) network layer protocols over the Internet and
   requests discussion and suggestions for improvements to this
   scenario.  This RFC also proposes the creation of an experimental OSI
   internet.  To participate in the experimental OSI internet, a system
   must abide by the agreements set forth in this RFC.  Distribution of
   this memo is unlimited.

WARNING

   The methods proposed in this RFC are suitable ONLY for experimental
   use on a limited scale.  These methods are not suitable for use in an
   operational environment.

Introduction

   Since the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Open
   Systems Interconnection (OSI) network layer protocols are in their
   infancy, both interest in their development and concern for their
   potential impact on internetworking are widespread.  This interest
   has grown substantially with the introduction of the US Government
   OSI Profile (GOSIP), which mandates, for the US Government, the use
   of OSI products in the near future.  The OSI network layer protocols
   have not yet received significant experimentation and testing.  The
   status of the protocols in the OSI network layer varies from ISO
   International Standard to "contribution" (not yet a Draft Proposal).
   We believe that thorough testing of the protocols and implementations
   of the protocols should take place concurrently with the progression
   of the protocols to ISO standards.  For this reason, the creation of
   an environment for experimentation with these protocols is timely.

   Thorough testing of network and transport layer protocols for

Hagens, Hall, & Rose                                            [Page 1]
RFC 1070                  Experimental OSI Net             February 1989

   internetworking requires a large, varied, and complex environment.
   While an implementor of the OSI protocols may of course test an
   implementation locally, few implementors have the resources to create
   a sufficiently large dynamic topology in which to test the protocols
   and implementations well.

   One way to create such an environment is to implement the OSI network
   layer protocols in the existing routers in an existing internetwork.
   This solution is likely to be disruptive due to the immature state of
   the OSI network layer protocols and implementations, coupled with the
   fact that a large set of routers would have to implement the OSI
   network layer in order to do realistic testing.

   This memo suggests a scenario that will make it easy for implementors
   to test with other implementors, exploiting the existing connectivity
   of the Internet without disturbing existing gateways.

   The method suggested is to treat the Internet as a subnetwork,
   hereinafter called the "IP subnet."  We do this by encapsulating OSI
   connectionless network layer protocol (ISO 8473) packets in IP
   datagrams, where IP refers to the Internet network layer protocol,
   RFC 791.  This encapsulation occurs only with packets travelling over
   the IP subnet to sites not reachable over a local area network.  The
   intent is for implementations to use OSI network layer protocols
   directly over links locally, and to use the IP subnet as a link only
   when necessary to reach a site that is separated from the source by
   an IP gateway.  While it is true that almost any system at a
   participating site may be reachable with IP, it is expected that
   experimenters will configure their systems so that a subset of their
   systems will consider themselves to be directly connected to the IP
   subnet for the purpose of testing the OSI network layer protocols or
   their implementations.  The proposed scheme permits systems to change
   their topological relationship to the IP subnet at any time, also to
   change their behavior as an end system (ES), intermediate system
   (IS), or both at any time.  This flexibility is necessary to test the
   dynamic adaptive properties of the routing exchange protocols.

   A variant of this scheme is proposed for implementors who do not have
   direct access to the IP layer in their systems.  This variation uses
   the User Datagram Protocol over IP (UDP/IP) as the subnetwork.
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